Monday, October 5, 2015

Time for a new chapter...

I've been home for almost 2 months now, it's time to wrap up this expat blog.  I'm stopping with a nice round number, this is my 100th post.  I'm not sure if I'll start another blog to replace this one.  Let's just see what I wind up doing with myself.

I really believe that by doing this blog I get to write my own story.  The adventures that I'll remember are the ones I've written.  The way I'll remember is the way I've chosen to write it.  Because of that, having the proper ending to the story is important to me but also really difficult to do.  Nothing ruins a book or a movie faster than a lame ending.  I feel like this is my version of an indie movie where nothing is really quite resolved since I'm still living the adventure and even though I'm no longer living in Japan, that experience has forever impacted me as a person.

People always ask me if I'm glad I went to Japan.  Yes, yes and YES!  It was an awesome experience.  I learned so much and grew as a person.  I loved living in a foreign culture.  I got to experience so many things that I would not have been able to as a tourist and I feel that I have a much better understanding of Japanese culture because of it. 

With that being said, I'm so glad to be home.  It is a little odd being back.  Everything is the same but I'm quite different, and not just because I lived in Japan for a year but I also came home with a baby.  I have been trying to figure out how to set up my new life here and how I fit into the places and peoples lives that I left.  I think that is something difficult to do when you have a baby, but even more difficult when you have a baby when living abroad for a year.  I'm starting to find a routine and make a nitch for Wren and I.

Trying to explain how I feel is difficult.  The closest I can come to is the feeling after you just finish reading a really good series.  One with a ton of books that takes you long enough to read that you really feel like you know the characters and that they are friends.  The type you stay up until 3 o'clock in the morning to finish because you have to know how it ends.  When you are all done, you are happy that it all worked for them out but not sure what to do next.  That sweet but every so slightly bitter feeling where you miss the characters in you book.  That's kind-of how I feel.  Like Japan was just one crazy dream and I'm now back to my real life.

It's been a little difficult to stay connected to that experience but it is something I would really like to try to do.  Japan was too special and meaningful to let it fade away.  If I could go back in time and talk to myself when Jeff and I were discussing whether we should go or not I would definitely tell my younger self to go.

I hope to go back to Japan some day and show my daughter where she was born and teach her a little about where I lived for a year.  I would like to go back and see some of the people I left behind and dearly miss.  A piece of my heart will always be in Japan.  Sayonara!

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